Thousands at Apprentice Boys parades

Thousands at Apprentice Boys parades

Tens of thousands of people have attended the main Apprentice Boys parade, which has passed off peacefully in Londonderry.

Events to commemorate the Siege of Derry began on Saturday morning, with the largest parade getting underway at around lunchtime.Around 15,000 marchers and some 150 bands from across the UK walked through the old walled city and across the Foyle to the Waterside.The event has been incident-free in recent years and that once again proved to be the case with police making no arrests on Saturday.Apprentice Boys governor Jim Brownlee said cross-community engagement has made the march an event to be enjoyed by all.He continued: "We always seek to have a good parade and we do a lot of work behind the scenes, a lot of outreach work by the association."This is a community day out."The annual parade is always a major security event for the PSNI with several hundred officers on duty and dozens more adopting a low-key role on the parade route.However officers were confident the day would pass off peacefully and encouraged people to come out to Londonderry and have a good time.Chief Superintendent Stephen Cargin, praised the cross-community engagement that has once again made a peaceful parade possible.He said: "I'm very pleased. It has been a really good day for the city, good day for policing in the city, no arrests and I don't remember when we've had that position."The hope is that how parades are handled in Londonderry can help other parts of Northern Ireland overcome their parading difficulties.Cannon & musket fire at Siege pageant in Derry-Londonderry. 15,000 Apprentice Boys on parade. #LegenDerrypic.twitter.com/mGJd7NjJwo— Mark McFadden (@MarkMcFadden) August 9, 2014

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